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Signing a Real Estate Contract

The Dos and Don’ts of Signing a Real Estate Contract

Signing a real estate contract is a significant step in the home buying or selling process. It’s a legally binding document that outlines the terms and conditions of the transaction. You should be aware of the do’s and don’ts when entering into a contract to ensure a smooth and successful real estate deal. To stay compliant with the law and avoid any mistakes that could put you at a serious disadvantage, it’s best to consult with an experienced real estate attorney before signing the contract.

Things to Do Before Signing a Real Estate Contract 

Read and Understand the Contract Thoroughly

Before signing any real estate contract, take the time to read it thoroughly. You should completely understand the terms, conditions, and obligations outlined in the document. If there is any part you don’t understand, speak with a real estate professional or legal advisor to obtain clarity.

Include Contingencies

Contingencies provide a way to back out of the deal without legal repercussions if certain conditions are not met. Common contingencies include home inspections, financing, and appraisals. You can get an exit strategy if issues arise by including these in your contract.

Get Everything in Writing

Verbal agreements can be easily misunderstood or forgotten. You should make sure that all aspects of the deal, including any negotiations or changes, are documented in writing within the contract. This helps prevent disputes and provides a clear reference point.

Consult with Professionals

Real estate transactions can be complex, involving legal and financial challenges. It’s recommended to consult with professionals such as real estate agents, attorneys, and financial advisors. They can provide guidance and ensure that your interests are protected.

Be Prepared for Closing Costs

Closing costs are part of any real estate transaction and include fees for various services. You need to be aware of these costs upfront and factor them into your budget. You can help avoid last-minute surprises by knowing what to expect.

Things to Watch Out for Before Signing a Real Estate Contract 

Don’t Rush the Process

Real estate transactions require careful consideration. Avoid rushing into signing a contract without thoroughly understanding its implications. You should take the time to review all terms and conditions to make informed decisions.

Don’t Waive Important Contingencies

While it might be tempting to streamline the process by waiving contingencies, doing so can expose you to significant risks. Home inspections, financing, and appraisal contingencies provide essential protections, so think twice before waiving them.

Don’t Neglect Due Diligence

You may want to perform due diligence on the property before signing the contract. This includes researching the neighborhood, property history, and any potential issues. Ignoring due diligence may lead to unpleasant surprises after the deal is done.

Don’t Overextend Your Budget

It’s critical to set a realistic budget and stick to it. Avoid the temptation to overspend, as this could lead to financial strain down the line. You need to be mindful of your financial limits and ensure the contract aligns with your budget.

Don’t Sign Without Legal Advice

Real estate contracts are legally binding documents with significant consequences. You should obtain legal advice to ensure that you fully understand your rights and obligations. A real estate attorney can provide valuable insights and help protect your interests.

Conditions You Must Have in Your Real Estate Contract

  • Identification of Parties: Clearly specify the names and contact information of the buyer(s) and seller(s) involved in the transaction. Include any legal entities or representatives, if applicable.
  • Property Description: Provide a detailed and accurate description of the property, including its address, legal description, and any relevant details that uniquely identify the real estate being transacted.
  • Purchase Price and Payment Terms: Clearly outline the agreed-upon purchase price for the property and specify the terms of payment, including any deposits, financing arrangements, and the timeline for payment.
  • Contingencies: Include contingency clauses that allow the buyer to withdraw from the contract without penalty under specific conditions. Common contingencies include those related to home inspections, financing, and the sale of the buyer’s existing property.
  • Closing Date and Location: Define the anticipated closing date for the transaction and specify the location where the closing will take place. This ensures that all parties are aware of the timeline and venue for completing the deal.
  • Title and Ownership: Address matters related to the property’s title, confirming that the seller has a clear and marketable title to the property. Specify how the title will be transferred and any associated costs.

Benefits of Having an Experienced Lawyer Draft the Real Estate Contract

Real estate transactions involve complex legal language. A qualified real estate lawyer possesses the legal expertise to interpret and explain the terms of the contract, ensuring that you fully understand your rights and obligations.

In addition, an attorney can identify potential risks and liabilities within the contract, helping you tackle the issues that could pose challenges or result in disputes in the future. This proactive approach is important for minimizing legal complications. 

Standardized contracts may not address the unique aspects of your transaction. An attorney can customize the contract to reflect your specific needs and circumstances.

Legal Help is Here from Top-Rated Real Estate Attorneys

The seasoned real estate attorneys at Johannesmeyer & Sawyer, PLLC will dissect the legal jargon, providing you with a comprehensive understanding of your rights and obligations. Our attorneys have extensive local knowledge, ensuring that your contracts are in compliance with regional regulations, and providing you with a distinct advantage in your real estate dealings. To set up your free consultation, call us at (844) 843-1589 or reach us online.